Human skin as a disease-sensing biological device
The skin microbiome can be used to incorporate novel functionalities in the host. This is because it is easily accessible and in direct contact with the host, has low immunogenicity and can be genetically manipulated. With this in mind, the EU-funded HuSME project aims to engineer the human skin commensal Cutibacterium acnes (C. acnes) as a disease-sensing biological device that will detect atopic dermatitis and produce an anti-inflammatory molecule in response. To achieve this, it will develop a vector and a methodology for efficient gene delivery into C. acnes. It will also construct synthetic gene circuits that will allow C. acnes to detect inflammatory markers in vitro and consequently secrete anti-inflammatory signals. The project will help to advance human microbiome genetic engineering.
Fields of science
- natural sciencesbiological sciencesmicrobiologybacteriology
- natural sciencesbiological sciencessynthetic biology
- medical and health scienceshealth sciencesinflammatory diseases
- medical and health sciencesmedical biotechnologygenetic engineering
- medical and health sciencesbasic medicinephysiologyhomeostasis